A winter storm occurs when there is significant precipitation and the temperature is low enough that precipitation forms as sleet or snow, or when rain turns to ice. A winter storm can range from freezing rain and ice, to moderate snowfall over a few hours, to a blizzard that lasts for several days. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures.

Know your risk: 

MPACT: Extreme winter weather can immobilize an entire region. Ice and heavy snowfall can knock out heat, power, and communications services,

sometimes for several days. Driving and walking can become extremely hazardous due to icy conditions, snowfall accumulation, low visibility, or extreme cold. People may need to stay at home or work without utilities or other services, until driving is safe. Pipes and water mains can break. 


Prepare now in case a winter storm hits and you are home for several days without power and heat.

  • Prepare by gathering emergency supplies, making a family plan, and discussing emergency notifications and expectations with your workplace and/or schools.

  • Install battery-powered or battery back-up carbon monoxide detectors.

  • If you have access to an OUTSIDE generator, have an electric cord long enough to keep the generator at least 20 feet from any door, window, or vent.

  • Make specific plans for how you will avoid driving.

  • Be alert to changing weather conditions using local alerts, radio, and other news sources for information and instructions. 


Stay indoors and avoid driving as much as possible.

If the power goes out, close off unused rooms to consolidate and retain heat.

Wear layered clothing and use blankets or sleeping bags to stay warm.

Bring pets inside.

NEVER use generators, outdoor heating or cooking equipment, such as a grill, camp stove, or a gasoline or propane heater, indoors.

NEVER heat a home with a stove.

If driving is absolutely necessary, keep disaster supplies in your vehicle, make sure your vehicle is properly equipped, and use extra precaution on the roads.

Limit your time outdoors. If you are outside, protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia by wearing several layers of warm, loose- tting, light-weight clothing. 


Take 20 minutes now to be sure you can stay safe, warm and fed.

Do it!